Secondary roads eyeing Scranton location

Sale of armory and DD 27 also discussed

While Greene County engineer Wade Weiss is waiting to learn if the county will be building a new storage facility in Jefferson to replace storage space at the former armory, he’s eyeing property in Scranton for a new secondary roads shop there.

A 2-1/2 acre parcel north of the county’s current Scranton shop on County Road E-53 on the south edge of Scranton is now available for purchase. According to Weiss, it would be “a great location” for a new shop, with plenty of room for a new building to stockpile crushed concrete and gravel.

The current aging building was purchased decades ago from the Iowa Department of Transportation. The roof has leaked for several years and “would be a candidate for removal” rather than repair, Weiss said.

Construction of a new shop is in long range planning, not in the immediate future. The county supervisors suggested Weiss get more information about the property.

The sale of the former armory to Greene County Schools for use as a bus garage is delayed while the school determines if the boiler system works. The county wants to sell the building “as is,” while the school board wants to buy it only if the boiler and septic system are in working order.

The boiler can’t be tested until Alliant Energy installs a new gas meter. Weiss said pressure checks required before installation of the meter were done last Saturday and “they turned out OK.” He has applied to Alliant for installation of an industrial meter as the owner of the facility. The cost of the meter will be passed on to the school.

There could be a dilemma. In order to test the boiler, all the antifreeze put in six years ago needs to be drained. If the antifreeze is drained and the purchase doesn’t come to pass, there could be a problem.

Weiss said he doesn’t see the gas meter or the boiler as a stumbling block to the transaction. “But I’m not sure the boiler is the most efficient way to heat the building anyway,” he said. “There’s a gas furnace in the office area and there are hanging heaters in the back that are very efficient if you don’t want to heat the whole facility. They may find out that if you want to pull in a bus with snow all over it, it’s nice instead of using boiler heat to blow the air across the bus.”

Drainage – Also the supervisors’ Monday meeting was the time for bid letting for surface drain repair in Drainage District 27 in the Paton-Dawson area. Justin Miller of McClure Engineering, the firm that prepared the report and construction documents, reported four contractors had pickup up plans for the project but no one had submitted a bid. Cost estimate of the project is $27,000.

Miller said he will try to find out if it was scheduling or the relative small size of the project that cause no one to bid on it. The project is below the threshold requiring bids, so he will ask instead for quotes. He said it is still possible to have the project done before spring planting.

Treasurer – County treasurer Donna Lawson gave her monthly report for November. Along with investment information and a tally of activities and revenue from the driver’s license station, Lawson reports on funding received by the county from Wild Rose Casino. Since July 1, the county has received $62,179.27.

The city of Jefferson receives the same amount as the county on each disbursement.

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